Fifteen years ago I made a 3D ghost cake for a dinner party. The ghost cake, designed by Carol Deacon, was featured in a British sugarcraft magazine I subscribed to at the time, and it was one of the few project tutorials I felt like I could do. Turns out, I was right because this cake is super easy. And quick, which is nice.
Fast forward to last weekend, when I realized that I haven’t uploaded any new cake decorating videos to my YouTube channel in 3 months, and since it’s now officially autumn, that means folks are probably thinking about Halloween. Or at least enjoying some cooler weather. So I decided to recreate this 3D ghost since it really only takes a few hours start to finish–that includes baking the cake and cooling time–and is ideal for beginners.
The first time I made this ghost, I used a smaller pudding basin to bake the cake, which left me with spare batter that I baked into rounds using a mini ball pan. This time, I used a box of Duncan Hines cake mix, because that’s what was in my pantry, and baked a 6″ round cake layer. The leftover batter went into my 2-quart Pampered Chef batter bowl. I think it turned out just fine, but my 2014 3D ghost cake is taller and more narrow than the first one I made, which is okay.
I was also trying to use up stuff I had on hand, which included some precolored Satin Ice from my cake decorating class teaching days. I had a little blue, a bit more purple, and plenty of white, so I mixed those together to make grayish purple marbled rolled fondant and covered a 12″ square cake drum with it.
I then added Super Black gel paste food color to the extra marbled purple fondant to use for the ghost’s eyes, arms, and mouth. It’s much easier to turn an already dark color black than to make black icing out of white. Luckily, I had just enough red Satin Ice to make the tongue, since red can be another tricky color to mix. I used food writer pens to draw the red lines on the ghost’s eyeballs and black rings under his eyes, a fine paintbrush and food color work just as well if you don’t have a set of those pens.
You could make this cake any size you like. I didn’t add any dowels rods in mine since it’s pretty small and I wasn’t going to travel with it, but for a bigger ghost cake some form of support would probably be a good idea. This would also be a super cute idea for mini ghosts made out of cupcakes. Have fun with it!